Once again our country is choosing who is to lead us into the next chapter of British history in the next General Election. Good luck with that UK, see you on the other side.
I've had the privilege of studying my own leadership style and observing others up close, whether the leaders are Janthi Mills-Ward & Mark Babych or the Directors of each department here at Hull Truck Theatre and their associates. I also observe from where I am both geographically and within my own life story, leadership styles across the UK.
I sit as an elected Chair of Governors and am also the Safe Guarding Governor at a local school. Keeping children and the school community safe is everyone's responsibility. However as a point of protocol I receive the first call, should there be one, from our Head Teacher. It takes deep listening skills, meticulous attention to detail and most of all team work to create a calm environment in difficult times. It takes leadership to calmly listen to crisis and take appropriate action. I'm describing our Head Teacher, who over the years in education, I've learnt an incredible amount from, alongside her Leadership Team.
In my own theatre practice, I enjoy creating the conditions for those of us who've worked hard to flourish. People who have taken themselves, their lives and their craft seriously. I like the words, responsibility, courage, love, tenacity and respect.
People say I am the calm in a storm. Well I am, until I'm not. There is no point gliding like a swan if what is actually required is to run like hell or stand firm and tell it like it is or shout loudly until you're heard. I'm a South East London Jamaican raised girl; raising your voice, game and your eyebrow is never too far away, if required.
Change Makers Crew.
I met up with my fellow Change Makers late last month at Birmingham Museum, which was kindly hosted by Sara Wajid. All Change Makers have stepped up to their own leadership challenge. Some like me, have had the opportunity to lead their own companies and careers before now, whilst others are stepping into the role of leadership for the very first time.
All are part of an underrepresented group of people, who have had limited opportunity to fail on projects of this size, let alone shine.
The thing about leaders of course, is that with followers, supporters and fellow leaders they can get things done. Given the right conditions, the change that is required - to be as great as we can be - happens right before your eyes. It's an absolute pleasure to witness and take part in the flourishing of leadership for the greater good of all. There are painful lessons along the way too but this is all part of the journey as we move forward. And forward we must continue. We have little time for anything else.